• so that happened

    Pity the Madrileño Vegetariano

    I landed in Madrid a week before Scrubs was due to arrive. My grandfather – my Yayo – was excited to meet him, but hid it (badly) beneath his usual gruff stoicism. He made sure the bedsheets were ironed and the pillows were plumped and the blankets were in the press (“por si acaso” he said, as if anybody in Madrid during the summer has ever been in need of a blanket). He dotted his long thoughtful silences with the punctuation of seemingly random questions about this new man in my life. The first time I broached The Subject, he was sitting in his armchair by the window, his chin…

  • Uncategorized

    Madrid Memories

    Madrid is my soul city. I haven’t been there in about nine months now, and I’m starting to feel that familiar ache that comes over me when I go too long without visiting. Half of my extended family live in the city, and I have been faithfully flying over at a rate of at least twice a year for the past thirty years. Three years ago, my last remaining grandparent – my Yayo – passed away, and I worried that this would change things. I worried I might not feel as welcome in Madrid now that I no longer had somewhere to stay. I worried that the connection I felt…

  • Life Skills Unlocked

    Life Skills Unlocked: Proper Etiquette

    Something happened last weekend that blew my mind: I realised that I have been eating incorrectly my entire life. But Quinn, I hear you say, if you have been managing to successfully manoeuvre food from your plate to your mouth for the past three decades, how can you possibly say you have been eating incorrectly? Well I’m glad you asked. When I was a small child, mealtimes were incredibly stressful affairs. There were a few reasons for this – including the fact that I went on a self-imposed hunger-strike for about two years at the age of six for reasons unknown – but one of the main reasons was that…